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Richard Whilden

Since 1990 Mr. Whilden has been a principal of the Contrarian Group, a business development and management company, where he directs major investment projects. Recently he was Chairman, President and CEO of GetThere, Inc., the leading Internet based business travel reservation company serving major US and international corporations and a first round Contrarian investment. GetThere was sold to the Sabre Corporation in 2000. Prior to GetThere he was Chairman of Caliber Bank in Phoenix, Arizona, and President, CEO and Chairman of the bank’s holding company, Independent Bancorp of Arizona, Inc. After raising $150 million, recruiting a top management team and gaining regulatory approval, he built this large bank holding system from 48 purchased Security Pacific Bank branches. In 1995 as the Arizona economic recovery strengthened Caliber was sold to Norwest Bank. Mr. Whilden also served as the Managing Director of the Council on California Competitiveness, a high level governor’s task force that helped the State emerge from the early 1990’s recession.

Prior to joining the Contrarian Group, Mr. Whilden was an Executive Vice President with TRW where he managed the Information Systems Group (ISG), the segment that included consumer and business credit reporting and related information service businesses. Through advanced product development and multiple acquisitions he grew ISG from $200 million in revenue to over $800 million, and this major information and database business became TRW’s most profitable segment. Prior to forming ISG Mr. Whilden had extensive executive responsibilities in the aerospace industry including winning and directing the development of a major spacecraft, the High Energy Astronomy Observatory, into a notable scientific success. This X ray and cosmic ray observatory included experiments from worldwide science institutions. When the program was almost cancelled he was instrumental in reselling the project to congress and the administration. For his HEAO work he was awarded the NASA Public Service Medal. Prior to HEAO he ran another of TRW’s most successful spacecraft project, the Air Force and DOE’s Vela Hotel, a nuclear detection program. He also managed the critical division that assembled and launched all of TRW’s advanced spacecraft.

Mr. Whilden is a director and chairman of the compensation committee for two publicly listed companies, Ambassadors International, Inc., and Ambassadors Group, Inc. and until recently was a director of the private company, Jas.D.Easton Inc., a major sporting goods supplier, that was very successfully sold. He has a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Redlands. He attended the Program for Management Development at the Harvard Business School. He served with the US Army. He resides in Manhattan Beach, California, with his wife Helaine.

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